Broadoak students take part in field gun competition

Broadoak students take part in field gun competition

Broadoak Academy introduced a unique and exciting activity as part of its curricular and extracurricular provision – field gun competition.

The Weston-super-Mare academy teamed up with Future Fit Junior Field Gun – a charitable organisation based in Plymouth – to provide the wooden field guns and component parts, as well as training and wider support introducing Year 7 students to the sport. Field gun competition has been running for almost 100 years and originated in the Royal Navy.

Junior field gun replicates this sport but with wooden guns, appropriate for young ‘field gunners’. It provides students with hands-on experiences that promote teamwork, discipline, physical fitness, problem-solving, agility, communication skills, leadership and much more.

The field gun activity involved students working together to operate a scaled down, wooden field gun, as inspired by historical military drills within the Royal Navy. The students were guided by trained instructors Dave and Des from Future Fit Junior Field Gun, who ensured safety and proper execution of the activity.

Every student of the Year 7 cohort participated in an action-packed day which started with an assembly by the academy’s PE Co-ordinator Mr Poulding and the Future Fit team, followed by a tutor group workshop involving drills and races. Dave and Des were delighted with the reaction of the students who engaged brilliantly with the day.

One year 7 student commented, ‘Sir, this is amazing. Can we do this in PE from now on?’ It was a brilliant day, and the students are looking forward to putting together a Broadoak Academy Field Gun Team to enter competitions in the near future.

That would make Broadoak Academy the first secondary school in the country to have a field gun team, and school leaders look forward to developing and building students’ involvement in the sport. They hope this will encourage other schools and groups in the community to follow suit in offering this provision for young people.

Principal Danny McGilloway said: “The way in which the children engaged and conducted themselves during the day was exemplary. They worked brilliantly in teams and cooperated throughout. I saw some individual children display confidence that I have not seen before. It was a truly inclusive, enjoyable experience for all of our year 7 students.”